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New Bucs QB coach Bajakian gets high marks

"He's very detail-oriented, made sure I was prepared for every game,'' former Central Michigan QB Dan LeFevour said of Mike Bajakian. "I trusted his ability to evaluate an opponent and get me ready to play."
"He's very detail-oriented, made sure I was prepared for every game,'' former Central Michigan QB Dan LeFevour said of Mike Bajakian. "I trusted his ability to evaluate an opponent and get me ready to play."
Published Jan. 25, 2015

TAMPA — Dan LeFevour left Central Michigan in 2009 as the NCAA career leader with 150 total touchdowns, and he remains the only player in Division I-A history with 12,000 passing yards and 2,500 rushing yards. His offensive coordinator for his last three years was Mike Bajakian, who was announced Thursday as the Bucs' new quarterbacks coach.

"I always felt very prepared," LeFevour said Friday. "He's very detail-oriented, made sure I was prepared for every game. I trusted his ability to evaluate an opponent and get me ready to play."

LeFevour, 27, said he liked Bajakian's ability to translate his understanding to his players, adjusting his scheme to cater to the team's biggest areas of talent, which included future Pro Bowl WR Antonio Brown with the Chippewas.

"It really doesn't matter how much the coaches know. It matters how much the players know," said LeFevour, who played for the CFL's Hamilton Tiger-Cats last year and is recovering from a knee injury.

"He was very good at relaying information, scouting our opponents and seeing what their weaknesses would be vs. our strengths for our plan of attack each week."

LeFevour has the odd distinction of having also played briefly for Bucs coach Lovie Smith and new offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter. LeFevour was a sixth-round pick of the Bears in 2010, when Smith was the coach, getting cut at the end of his first preseason. He then spent six weeks with the Jaguars and Koetter a year later.

BREAKOUT AHEAD: Who should be most excited about Koetter and Bajakian working together on a new Bucs offense? Perhaps TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins, who was limited by injuries in his rookie year.

Both coaches have a history of using tight ends prominently.

Koetter had Tony Gonzalez in Atlanta and got 10 touchdown catches out of the Jaguars' Marcedes Lewis in 2010. And when Bajakian was at Cincinnati, his leading receiver in 2012 was Travis Kelce, who had eight touchdowns that season.

REMEMBER HIM? Darrelle Revis, LeGarrette Blount, Tim Wright and Jonathan Casillas are easy to remember as former Bucs who will be playing in the Super Bowl with the Patriots.

But what about CB Kyle Arrington? He played one game for the Bucs in 2009, then was claimed by the Patriots (and future Bucs GM Jason Licht).

He's now in his sixth season with New England, with 56 starts and nine interceptions along the way.

THIS AND THAT: Another obscure former Bucs player in the upcoming Super Bowl? Allen Bradford. Drafted by the Bucs as a running back in 2011, he played only one game for Tampa Bay, with five carries for 13 yards. Seattle picked him up and moved him to linebacker, where he is now on the Seahawks' practice squad. … Two former Bucs assistants got coordinator jobs this week, with former linebackers coach Joe Barry taking over the Redskins defense and former QBs coach Greg Olson taking over the Jaguars offense. The Bucs will face both next season.

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Contact Greg Auman at gauman@tampabay.com and (813) 226-3346. Follow @gregauman.

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